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It's another three-for-one reading thread!

Lily Fairbairn
Half-elven


Aug 13, 2:48pm

Post #1 of 7 (226 views)
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It's another three-for-one reading thread! Can't Post

Yes, I'm disappearing again, and won't be able to post another reading thread until September 3. I'll keep a list of both paper and audio books I read while I'm away. I have 5-6 books on my MP3 player (including the unabridged RotK), and an e-reader loaded with a variety of titles, and of course I'll throw in a couple of paper books, just because.

What with one thing and another I've only had time to continue reading (or listening to) Daphne du Maurier's classic novel Rebecca, and have just passed the halfway point.

It's been many years since I actually read the book, as distinct from watching one of the dramatizations. (My favorite is the 1979 version with Jeremy Brett, Joanna David, and Anna Massey---it's Massey, the erstwhile Mrs. Danvers, who is reading the audio book.)

I'm struck by how slowly the story moves, building layer upon layer of personality and suspense. My 21st century self has become very impatient with the narrator/bride's clueless timidity and with Maxim's condescension toward her, but it all works in context. So does the niggling knowledge that if someone, any one, had taken the n/b aside and told her the truth about Rebecca right up front, instead of letting her blunder her way to it.... Well, it wouldn't be at all the same story.

The writer in me understands why du Maurier didn't name the n/b, but I can also see how in some passages she had to scramble awkwardly to avoid using a name. The writer in me also admires the beauty of the descriptions and the way the n/b's mind will create imaginative scenarios.

Y'all play nicely while I'm away, and read lots of good books!

Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?
Where is the helm and the hauberk, and the bright hair flowing?
Where is the hand on the harpstring, and the red fire glowing?
Where is the spring and the harvest and the tall corn growing?
They have passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow;
The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow....


Annael
Immortal


Aug 13, 10:21pm

Post #2 of 7 (177 views)
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catching up with Isabel Dalhousie [In reply to] Can't Post

somehow when I was noticing, Alexander McCall Smith wrote two new Isabel novels plus a couple of novellas. So I'm catching up. Isabel seems to be getting dottier; she checks out mentally on people more and more as she thinks about stuff, and her mind goes off on some very odd tangents. Perfect Husband Jamie still loves her for it, though, and Professor Lettuce & Dr. Dove are as narcissistic and condescending as always, despite the fact that Isabel usually gets the better of them every time they try something on. It's been a nice break from reality this week.

I am a dreamer of words, of written words. I think I am reading; a word stops me. I leave the page. The syllables of the words begin to move around … The words take on other meanings as if they had the right to be young.

-- Gaston Bachelard

* * * * * * * * * *

NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967
my blog: https://jodybower.com/myths-archetypes-in-film/


Ataahua
Superuser / Moderator


Thu, 4:15am

Post #3 of 7 (143 views)
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Stories of Your Life and Others, by Ted Chiang [In reply to] Can't Post

I've never been so challenged by a collection of short stories. Ted's writing is a marvel: he clearly loves Big Ideas and has a wonderful way of holding on tight to your attention, but with a couple of them I felt that he was writing his stories on two levels and I could grasp only the simplest level. Didn't stop me from loving his work, though.

This book is definitely one to re-read in future years.

Celebrimbor: "Pretty rings..."
Dwarves: "Pretty rings..."
Men: "Pretty rings..."
Sauron: "Mine's better."

"Ah, how ironic, the addictive qualities of Sauron’s master weapon led to its own destruction. Which just goes to show, kids - if you want two small and noble souls to succeed on a mission of dire importance... send an evil-minded beggar with them too." - Gandalf's Diaries, final par, by Ufthak.


Ataahua's stories


CuriousG
Half-elven


Thu, 9:57pm

Post #4 of 7 (102 views)
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Number the Stars by Lois Lowry [In reply to] Can't Post

The only other book of hers I've read is The Giver, which I'm quite a fan of. It's like a sweater in that it's knitted from multiple threads. I was a little disappointed with Number the Stars, which is just about one thread, I'd say. It is children's lit, of course, so it can't be too complicated. And it wasn't bad. Just lukewarm. I'm not sure why it won a Newbery Prize.

The story is about personal courage in a girl whose family helps their friends/neighbors, who are Jewish, flee to Sweden when the Nazis are trying to round them up and take them away. I'm sure there were Danes at the time saying "They're not my problem" or "Let the Germans have them," but what's remembered is that there were enough Danes working together to rescue them, so that's something Denmark should be proud of, and in the Afterword, Lowry said it was the focus on doing the right thing despite personal danger that moved her to write it.


Annael
Immortal


Fri, 2:48pm

Post #5 of 7 (35 views)
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have also started "On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous" [In reply to] Can't Post

beautiful and wrenching. A series of vignettes about a young, gay, Vietnamese boy growing up in the US after his mother and grandmother emigrate from Vietnam.

I am a dreamer of words, of written words. I think I am reading; a word stops me. I leave the page. The syllables of the words begin to move around … The words take on other meanings as if they had the right to be young.

-- Gaston Bachelard

* * * * * * * * * *

NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967
my blog: https://jodybower.com/myths-archetypes-in-film/


CuriousG
Half-elven


Fri, 2:52pm

Post #6 of 7 (34 views)
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That's a great title [In reply to] Can't Post

When I become the Dark Lord of the Universe, I will decree that all titles must be memorable/lyrical/unique like that, instead of minimalist titles like "A Life" or "I Am."

You see, I will start out with good intentions...


cats16
Valinor


Sun, 4:35am

Post #7 of 7 (18 views)
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I've been meaning to read him for ages... [In reply to] Can't Post

Glad to see another good review. Will try to find time to check this out.

Join us every weekend in the Hobbit movie forum for this week's CHOW (Chapter of the Week) discussion!



 
 

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